There are a million different ways to gain speed in the pool, but as a coach, I’ve come to better understand the tedious nature of doing so. It takes a lot of time, dedication, and patience to make notable improvements to your swimming times. Frustration can take over an athlete’s efforts to gain speed long before they reach their goals, but the biggest time drops tend to happen at the end of each season. If you feel stuck, consider giving these three tips a try rather than giving up on your goal to be a faster swimmer.
3 tips that should help you add some speed to your swimming stroke
1. Add intervals to your training
Intervals allow your body to understand what fast swimming feels like. You can use a wristwatch to keep track of the time if you don’t have access to a deck clock. The clock doesn’t lie in terms of time, so you can track your progress. Believe me, dropping even just a second at a time is a victory. It will take time to see a huge drop, but that’s why we get so excited about multiple seconds off the clock in swimming.
2. Break down your stroke and improve it in parts
If you execute a drill, make sure you can really see and feel the change. You don’t have to use the point of view from on top of your body. For example, if you’re trying to correct your arm placement, use the line at the bottom of the pool. That line helps guide swimmers to stay in their lane and is a great indicator as to how even your stroke is. You don’t want to cross over the line because that means you’re hurting your shoulders by pulling harder on one side than the other. Another great way to make changes to your stroke is to get someone to tape you in the water. It can be challenging to feel your flaws while you are swimming, so getting a visual of your training and focusing on small parts of your stroke can go a long way.
3. Plan out your full season
You can plan it month by month or week by week, but I guarantee if you plan out your workouts you’ll definitely do more yardage then if you just show up to the pool by yourself with no clear-cut plan. In swimming, as in any other sport, executing a plan is the best way to reach goals!
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